Appointment Process Changing in Carlsbad

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The Carlsbad City Council discussed changes to its process for appointing members to its boards, commissions and committees, following a trial period to test changes approved in February.
The City of Carlsbad has a number of boards, commissions and committees that provide input, guidance and recommendations on key decisions affecting Carlsbad. The process for appointing community members to serve was reviewed at the Feb. 26, 2019, City Council meeting as part of a comprehensive update to the Carlsbad Municipal Code, a collection of city laws.

In February, the City Council approved changes designed to standardize things like the number of members, meeting locations, and how boards, commissions and committees determine their annual work plans with the City Council. Some of these groups have rules specific to their topic areas or fall under state or federal regulations, so total standardization is not possible.

The City Council also decided in February to try some new approaches to how members are selected with the goal of making the process more transparent and easier to follow while encouraging broad participation by community members. The city’s recent switch to electing City Council members by district instead of citywide also spurred changes to the appointment process.

Based on their experiences with the changes and feedback from community members, the City Council decided at its July 16, 2019, meeting to make a few additional refinements to the process before approval. Some of the key changes include:

Providing greater flexibility in the questions asked during the public interview process
Clarifying to applicants that they are encouraged to meet with individual City Council members in addition to the public City Council interview
Specifying how many candidates will be brought forward for an interview by the City Council
Simplifying the scoring process following City Council interviews
Providing a minimum of two weeks’ notice to applicants selected for a City Council interview
Updating the application form to include information on the appointment process and a link so residents can determine their voting district

City staff will update the draft appointment policy and bring it back to the City Council for approval at an upcoming meeting. The draft policy is available on the city’s website.